RECYCLING AS FERTILIZER
The cost of fertilizer has recently increased exponentially. Global prices in 2022 were three times higher than at the start of 2021, which is likely to cause food costs to rise this year, putting an additional 100 million people at risk of undernourishment,
One adult excretes 100-120 gallons of urine per year, which contains about 10lbs nitrogen, 1lb of phosphorus, and 2 pounds of potassium.
Urine-based fertilizers can replace synthetic fertilizers. Production of synthetic fertilizers from natural gas is extremely energy intensive. Production and application of synthetic fertilizers releases lots of carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide.
TO HOME GARDENS
Urine of one person contains about 10lbs of nitrogen, 1 pound of phosphorus, and 2 pounds of potassium, enough to fertilize 4000-5000 sq.ft. of gardens
No storage treatment of urine is needed to fertilize crops within the same household collecting the urine, as long as crops that are eaten raw are not harvested within a month of fertilization. The risk of direct disease transmission within the household is far larger than the risk from using urine to fertilize crops.
“Urine diversion – hygienic risks and microbial guidelines for reuse”] by Caroline Schönning (2003)
Research by the Rich Earth Institute
Pharmaceuticals in Crops Grown with Urine Fertilizer
University research over 6 years studying 26 pharmaceuticals showed that:
Pharmaceuticals are present in urine, but when applied as fertilizer , urine enters a complex and biologically highly active soil ecosystem, where it can remain in the active topsoil zone for weeks or months, allowing time for any pharmaceuticals to be biodegraded.
- Pharmaceuticals found in the crop tissues are extremely small, found in parts per billion
These quantities are not a significant risk to human health.
- pharmaceuticals in the soil were found in parts per billion
- pharmaceuticals in the groundwater below were found in parts per trillion
Research reported in the Guardian 1/18/23
To test how safe the fertilizers were, researchers at the University of Hohenheim in Germany screened the waste for 310 chemicals such as insect repellants, rubber additives and flame retardants, which people sometimes empty into their toilet. They also looked at pharmaceutical products such as painkillers and hormones, which end up mainly in urine. More than 93% of these chemicals were not detected, and the remainder were present at very low concentrations.
Hauler brings urine to Urine Depot for storage and pasteurization.
Urine is made safe by pasteurization with heat to 171 degrees F for 3 minutes.
Pasteurized urine is an EPA Class A fertilizer , safe to use for fertilizer with no restrictions.
Community-Scale Treatment of Urine to Produce Fertilizer.
Pasteurization destroys pathogens & viruses.
Urine becomes an EPA Class A material and safe fertilizer for ALL crops after it has been heated for 3 minutes at 171 F.
Urine pasteurizer was developed by the Rich Earth Institute.